Part of Doctober.
Sprawling, immediate, and complex, Peter Nicks’s vérité documentary moves like a pulsing, timely thriller. In 2014, after over a decade of federal monitoring for misconduct and civil rights abuses, the Oakland Police Department hires Chief Sean Whent in hopes of bridging an historically tense divide between its officers and the community they serve. THE FORCE captures everything—it hovers over Oakland’s evening skies and rides inside speeding police vehicles, granting viewers breathless firsthand access to some of law enforcement’s most dangerous jobs. With fly-on-the-wall intimacy, we see a department trapped in transition, desperate to shed its corrupt image, but also challenged by an increasingly organized and urgent Black Lives Matter movement erupting right outside its doorstep.
"Hypnotic and eye-opening…Nicks has a style that is both experiential and ethereal: From its ground-level immersion in the minutiae of police work to its sweeping helicopter shots of the city at night, THE FORCE has the texture of a Michael Mann film combined with the clarity of a Frederick Wiseman documentary." —Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice
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